Alzheimer's With Cerebrovascular Disease Compounds Cognitive Decline

Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:55
LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 8, 2014) -- Researchers from the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging at the University of Kentucky have been able to confirm anecdotal information on patients with both Alzheimer's disease (AD) and cerebrovascular disease (CVD) using mouse models in two different studies.


The findings of these two studies, which were recently published in Acta Neuropathologica and Alzheimer's Research & Therapy, have potentially significant implications for patients with both disorders.


Both papers studied CVD in Alzheimer's disease mouse models using different lifestyle factors. 


Paul Murphy, Ph.D, and his group studied the combined effects of type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer's disease, and cerebrovascular disease in a novel mouse genetic model.


Donna Wilcock, Ph.D, and her group used a different mouse model to study the effects of Alzheimer's disease and hyperhomocysteinemia on cognition. An elevated level of homocysteine is associated with a number of disease states, including CVD.


According to Wilcock, both papers came to similar conclusions.


"We found that, while the primary Alzheimer's pathologies were unchanged, the learning and memory outcomes were significantly worse. In other words, in our mouse models, the cognitive effects of Alzheimer's disease combined with cerebrovascular disease were compounded both in terms of severity and the speed of decline," Wilcock says.


Murphy emphasizes the significance of the findings, particularly since approximately 40 percent of Alzheimer's patients also have cerebrovascular disease.


"We are really excited about these results," Murphy said. "Until now, we have had almost no way to study how Alzheimer’s and cerebrovascular disease interact. These new mouse models give us a way to test ideas about the disease, and ultimately develop ways to treat it."


The UK Sanders-Brown Center on Aging (SBCoA) was established in 1979 and is one of the original ten National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded Alzheimer’s disease Research Centers. The SBCoA is internationally acclaimed for its progress in the fight against illnesses facing the aging population.


Nine Incoming Honors Students Named Lewis Scholars

Mon, 07/07/2014 - 10:03

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 8, 2014) — The University of Kentucky Honors Program has selected nine incoming freshmen as recipients of the T.W. Lewis Scholarship. Representing Fayette County and a select group of  Appalachian counties in Kentucky, these "Lewis Scholars" will serve as the first cohort of Honors students to receive the prestigious scholarship.


While T.W. Lewis has offered a scholarship program in his name and his mother's, Ruth Jones Lewis, since 2006, this year marks the implementation of the new Lewis Scholars program, housed in UK Honors. This January, the UK Board of Trustees accepted a pledge of $1 million from the T.W. Lewis Foundation to create and endow the fund.


"Mr. Lewis' generous endowment makes it possible for some of Kentucky's best students to attend UK," said Ben Withers, associate provost for undergraduate education. "I have enjoyed working with him and with Dan Stone (Gatton Endowed Professor) to create an innovative program that asks us to think deeply about what 'student success' means. Mr. Lewis came to us with an idea for a four-year program that provides resources and tools students can use to explore skills and aptitudes that they can develop to better reach their full potential in their professional and personal lives. We are excited about the potential for this program as a way for Honors students to create networks and find mentors both on and off campus."


The recipients were selected on the basis of their academic achievement, demonstrated leadership potential, and financial need.  They will each receive $5,000 toward the cost of tuition, room and board for the 2014-2015 academic year.   


The 2014 Lewis Scholars are:    

  • Cassandra Almasri, a graduate of Dunbar High School in Fayette County, planning to major in chemistry.
  • Curtis Bethel, a graduate of Tates Creek High School in Fayette County, planning to major in physics.
  • Courtney Fields, a graduate of Lafayette High School in Fayette County, planning to major in undergraduate studies.
  • Christa Newman, a graduate of Tates Creek High School in Fayette County, currently registered as an undergraduate studies major.
  • William "Mac" Hall, a graduate of Pikeville High School in Pike County, planning to major in civil engineering. 
  • John W. Slusher, a graduate of Harlan High School in Harlan County, planning to major in political science.
  • Yulia K. Perevozchikova, a graduate of Rowan County High School, planning to major in human health sciences.
  • Galvin L.T. Greene, a graduate of The Piarist School in Floyd County, planning to major in electrical engineering. 
  • Gregory "Austin" Murphy, a graduate of Sheldon Clark High School in Martin County, planning to major in computer engineering. 

T.W. Lewis is a former member of the UK Capital Campaign Steering Committee, serving during the "Dream, Challenge, Succeed" campaign. He received a degree in mechanical engineering from the university in 1971. 


For more information on the T.W. Lewis Scholarship Fund, visit or contact the Honors Program at 859-257-3111 or


The UK Honors Program is part of the Academy of Undergraduate Excellence within the Division of Undergraduate Education at UK.

Blue Abroad: Saying Cheers to England

Sun, 07/06/2014 - 06:43

LONDON, ENGLAND (July 10, 2014) A group of 15 UK students was seeing blue across the pond this summer. In a course designed specifically for first-generation students, students who are the first in their families to attend college, the group explored global communication and business in London, England, led by Director of First Generation Initiatives Matthew Deffendall.


Throughout their journey, UKNow highlighted some of their experiences by publishing their blogs.


Emily Griffin is a marketing and management major from Louisville, Kentucky. Her blog is below:


This is my last post from London.  CHEERS!

Today has been very bittersweet.  We started out the morning with a coach ride to Coca-Cola.  I felt like a kid in a candy shop.  I was so excited to learn about the marketing and production of such a huge corporation.  We got to see the different types of branding, the global communication Coke uses, and the best part was the production line.  We got to see the machines that stack the Cokes, make the Cokes, and distribute the Coke.  It was so neat to be in such a global business environment.  After this, we got lunch at Pret where I had a delicious salmon and cheese sandwich.  I will miss this grab and go sandwich place that was always convenient.  Afterwards, I had my final workout at the gym and got ready for our dinner.  


Farewell dinner was at Strada on the Thames River.  It was really delicious because this time we got to choose our meal!  I had sausage and pasta and chocolate fontenta for dessert. The chocolate chip gelato with it was amazing!  Afterward, we all got to talk about our time abroad.  I really felt like I made a family here.  Even being all from UK, we are still so diverse, which made this trip that much more enjoyable. Matthew cried, we laughed, Sarah's boyfriend got pooped on by a bird, and we just enjoyed each other's company.


I have been wanting to travel abroad for years now. The fact that my time here in London, England, is coming to an end is extremely bittersweet. I have been preparing for months, and thanks to many of my friends and family, I have had the most amazing trip I could ever ask for. I got to see the most historical places in the world (walking the London Bridge, seeing London from a huge farriswheel, cruising on the Thames River, standing in two hemispheres at once, seeing the homes of queens and kings of the past and present, and much much more) while being in the most diverse city in the world. I could walk down the street and hear English, French, Spanish, Russian, and many more languages spoken all around me.


I have learned a lot about myself in the time I have been here. I feel more adaptable to my surroundings. People here in London take the time to appreciate nature and to communicate with friends after work by going to a local pub or by sitting out in a park just breathing in the fresh air. Even though I am in a different culture and country, I have never felt out of place here. I met the most amazing family and friends while abroad, and I know that no matter what happens we can all share this common bond.


The beauty that I have seen on this trip cannot be put into words. I have really enjoyed my time here, and I am coming home with a new outlook on life and learning to appreciate the little things more often. I loved being able to work with global businesses because it really made me realize that I chose the right major for me, and that I graduated in the field of study that I am extremely passionate about. I can't think of a better way to end my undergraduate career then being fully immersed into a brand new culture.


I really do appreciate every single person's support, time, money, and anything else they invested in me and this trip. My family, friends, and boyfriend have been so supportive of me and made my time away from home that much easier and enjoyable.  We can never replicate this time abroad again, however, no one can ever take this away from us — and that is truly the most rewarding part of my time abroad.  I am so lucky to have had this experience.  I am excited to go home, but I know that I have found a second home to me, and a second family. 


So, London and all the wonderful people here, it is not goodbye — it is see you later. CHEERS!


Blue Abroad: Spotting the Queen of England

Sun, 07/06/2014 - 06:33

LONDON, ENGLAND (July 8, 2014) A group of 15 UK students spent three weeks seeing blue in England this summer. In a course designed specifically for first-generation students, students who are the first in their families to attend college, the group explored global communication and business in London, England, led by Director of First Generation Initiatives Matthew Deffendall.


Throughout their journey, UKNow has been highlighting some of their experiences by publishing their blogs.


Ryan Wilhite is a freshman majoring in political science. An account of his experience is below:


One of the most memorable moments from London happened completely by accident. To put it simply, two of my classmates and I got completely lost and accidently managed to bump into the Queen of England.


I'll explain this starting at the beginning. One of our assignments for our class was to explore a particular borough of London. We were divided into five groups of three and tasked with exploring the borough, interviewing people who live and work there, and wondering through the borough's market.


Our group — consisting of N' Deyah, Betty and me — was assigned the Covent Garden market in the Westminster borough. We all left our flats early on a Saturday morning to go explore our area, but at that point, we didn't realize how massive the area of Westminster is. The market was actually walking distance from our flats, but we took the Tube instead, deciding to get off at the Green Park stop and walk to Westminster.


When we got off at Green Park, we saw a huge crowd of people. Green Park is right next to Buckingham Palace, so first we thought the crowd might be there to see a changing of the guard ceremony. We were still surprised at how many people had turned up for that, however. So, we decided to stick around for a while and see what was causing all of the commotion.


The next thing we knew, the crowd started to part as a horse-drawn carriage made its way toward the Palace; the people started going nuts. As we had wandered through the crowd, not knowing what was happening, we had actually managed to secure a pretty sweet spot to view what we then realized was happening — it was the Queen coming back from a ceremony. No big deal; we were just casually staring at Queen  Elizabeth II. Right when we realized who we were seeing, all three of us started waving… and then coolest part of the story happened: she waved back!


This experience was really interesting and surreal. I find it really strange that I've now been able to lay eyes on another country's monarch but that I've never been even nearly as close to our own president. It was definitely a unique cultural experience.


Later that day, we did eventually find our way to the market we were assigned to explore. I've got to say, though, I'm really glad we got lost that morning.